Due to the recent rash of child molestation cases, particularly in the classroom, harsher penalties will be doled out to public servants and teachers found guilty of sexually assaulting minors, GB Times reports:
People who have special duties with children, such as teachers, and have sex with girls under the age of 14, regardless of whether the act is consensual or not, will be charged with rape, which is punishable by at least 10 years in prison and even death, according to the guideline, which was jointly unveiled by the Supreme People’s Court (SPC), the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Justice.
Against a background of growing child sexual assaults, the newly unveiled guideline has drawn wide discussions following a strong appeal for the abolition of the crime of soliciting underage prostitutes, which carries a sentence of five to 15 years in prison and is widely considered as a law that may help offenders avoid harsher penalties.
“The guideline is an effective supplement to the current legal system and aims to better deal with child rape and protect the rights and interests of underage victims,” said Lü Xiaoquan, a lawyer from Beijing Zhongze Women’s Legal Counseling and Service Center.
“But it’s a pity that the fundamental problem (abolishing the crime of soliciting underage prostitutes) is yet to be solved,” he said, noting that the lighter penalty will only give room for more violations. “We think that anybody who has sex with kids under 14 should be charged with rape.”